If there is one way you can dress up your regular braids and get heads turning in admiration, it’s by installing goddess braids. Unique in their appearance, these braids have become popular among women of color all around the world. If you’re yet to hop on the goddess braids train or you’ve already joined this good hairstyle band and you’re looking for different new ways to style them, then continue reading.
What are goddess braids?
Also known as Bohemian (boho) braids, goddess braids are regular parted braids, which can be a box, diamond, zigzag, or triangle parts, that feature a single curly strand on individual braids. These curly strands may be attached to some or all of the braids and the result is a distinct finished look. Goddess braids can be created using the traditional braids technique (braiding the hair and the extension together at the base of the natural hair) or the knotless technique (braiding the natural hair first to two or three inches before adding the extension). To ensure a neat appearance, it is best to have your goddess braids done by a professional stylist.
How to care for your goddess braids
Here are what you need to do to keep your goddess braids looking fresh, neat, and presentable for a long period:
1. Trim flyaways
You may notice that the older your goddess braids become, the more small strands of extension hairs (and your natural hair) pull apart from the braids and stand out on their own giving your hair an unruly appearance. These are called flyaways. To keep your goddess braids looking fresh and neat, you can trim these flyaways – the extensions though, and not your natural hair – with a pair of hair shears or scissors.
2. Oil your braids
Like your natural hair, your goddess braids also need shine and what better way to achieve this than to rub some oil on them? By using oils specially formulated for braids, you can keep your goddess braids looking healthy and neat for a long time.
3. Cover with a shower cap
Having water splash on your hair when using the bathroom is inevitable. If the hair is not properly dried, it can cause itching and even start to smell. To avoid this, it is advisable that you pull your goddess braids into an updo and cover them with a shower cap. If water does get into your goddess braids somehow, make sure to dry them with a hair dryer. Similarly, it is advisable to always have a shower cap or any other protective cap in your handbag when you go out during the rainy season in case of a sudden downpour.
4. Do not leave them in for too long
Whether you’re enjoying your goddess braids hairstyle or you’re too busy or too lazy to – hey, no judging, it happens to all of us – you should not leave your goddess braids in for longer than four to eight weeks. Braids that have been kept in for too long tend to have a disheveled look to them. The natural hair can also get weak and break or pull out at the roots when you finally take down the braids. Furthermore, the hair may start to itch and smell if you keep them in for too long.
5. Wrap your goddess braids with a satin or silk scarf to bed
Before you go to bed, wrap a silk or satin scarf around your goddess braids to keep them and your natural hair from losing moisture, shedding, and breaking which can happen as a result of the friction of rubbing your hair against your cotton pillowcase. It can also give your braids an unruly or disheveled look in the morning. The satin or silk scarf helps to keep your braids in place and retain moisture as you toss and turn in bed.
6. Do not style every day
Like regular box braids, goddess braids are versatile when it comes to styling options which is what you need for a fresh look for different days or occasions. However, you should not be manipulating your braids into different hairstyles daily as this can put tension on your hair and fragile edges and cause them to break, shed or pull out at the roots. Instead, limit your styling to once every three days.